Morning Edition

Weekdays from 5-10 a.m.

Waking up is hard to do, but it's easier with NPR's Morning Edition. Hosts Renée Montagne, Steve Inskeep and David Greene bring the day's stories and news to radio listeners on the go.

For more about Morning Edition, visit their website.

A bi-coastal, 24-hour news operation, Morning Edition is hosted by NPR's Steve Inskeep or David Greene in Washington, D.C., and Renee Montagne at NPR West in Culver City, CA.

Some of the most familiar voices are heard regularly including news analyst Cokie Roberts and sport commentator Frank Deford, as well as the special weekly series StoryCorps, which travels the country recording America's oral history. Morning Edition draws on reporting from correspondents based around the world, and producers and reporters in locations in the United States.

Bringing you the morning business news "for the rest of us" in the time it takes you to drink your first cup of joe, Marketplace Morning Report is another great way to start your day with host David Brancaccio. It's heard at 5:51 a.m. and 6:51 a.m. each morning.

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3:44am

Fri July 20, 2012
Planet Money

Public Pensions Are About To Look Less Healthy

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 11:06 am

The health of public pension plans — the retirement plans for teachers, firefighters, police officers and other state and local governments — has gotten plenty of attention lately.

Some plans are hurting, and numbers from state and local governments suggest their public pension plans are underfunded by about $1 trillion.

But that gap between what they owe and what they have on hand today is about to look bigger — much bigger, in some cases.

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3:41am

Fri July 20, 2012
The Veepstakes

Jindal's Story Intrigues, But Can It Get Him A VP Nod?

Originally published on Fri July 20, 2012 2:42 pm

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal speaks during the 2011 Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Mention Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, and a lot of people still remember his 2009 Republican response to President Obama's first address to Congress. In a voice often compared to Kenneth the Page on 30 Rock, Jindal addressed viewers across the nation as if they were primary school students.

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3:40am

Fri July 20, 2012
U.S.

Rain Over Texas Quenches Dry Lone Star State

Originally published on Fri July 20, 2012 2:42 pm

Pedestrians stand along the River Walk in San Antonio, Texas, in May. The state has gotten a reprieve from more than a year of drought.
Eric Gay AP

While severe drought is taking hold in the Midwest, Texas is doing better. At this time last year, the state was on fire, crops were desiccated in the field and livestock were slowly starving. But recent rains have almost ended more than a year of record drought.

"If you look at the way we were thinking and feeling on the last July 16, that was desperation. That was despair," says Gene Hall, public relations director for the Texas Farm Bureau.

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3:35am

Fri July 20, 2012
London 2012: The Summer Olympics

Olympians' Dilemma: 'Starve My Soul' For Ramadan?

Originally published on Wed July 25, 2012 8:12 am

Mohammed Ahmed runs at the NCAA championships in June in Des Moines, Iowa. He's representing Canada at the Olympics and had to decide whether to fast for Ramadan this year.
Charlie Neibergall AP

Mazen Aziz, representing Egypt in the 2012 Summer Olympics, has trained for the 10,000-meter, open-water swim for years. It's a grueling race that can take upwards of 1 hour and 45 minutes, depending on the waves, current or water temperature.

But Aziz is Muslim, and with the Olympics falling during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, the 22-year-old athlete had to make a choice: be in top physical condition or maintain a primary tenet of his faith.

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3:25am

Fri July 20, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Activists Fear Brazil's Triumph Over HIV Has Fizzled

Originally published on Fri July 20, 2012 2:42 pm

Drag queens at an outdoor restaurant in Copacabana incorporate safe sex messages into a show of lip-synced songs and risque jokes.
Jason Beaubien NPR

Brazil's HIV/AIDS program — which has been praised as a model for developing nations — is now under strain.

When HIV first emerged in the 1980s, Brazil responded quickly to the epidemic. The South American country launched large-scale safe-sex drives and gave away millions of condoms. It offered free treatment to anyone who was infected. The Brazilian government took on international pharmaceutical companies and even broke patents to cut medication costs.

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3:02am

Fri July 20, 2012
Asia

N. Korean Conundrum: Are Political Changes Real?

Originally published on Fri July 20, 2012 10:28 pm

In this photo released by the Korean Central News Agency and distributed in Tokyo by the Korea News Service on July 9, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is seen with a woman in Pyongyang. It's not clear who she is, but a first lady would be a marked departure from the days of Kim's father, who kept his personal life private.
AP

North Korea's army has been swearing oaths of loyalty to leader Kim Jong Un after he was given the new title of marshal of the nation, cementing his position. This comes just days after the army chief was dismissed for illness. Analysts suspect these announcements are masking far deeper changes, but there's disagreement about what it means.

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10:01pm

Thu July 19, 2012
StoryCorps

Two Tough Guys Meet Tough Times, And Each Other

Originally published on Fri July 20, 2012 2:42 pm

Jake Bainter and "Boston" Bill Hansbury recently visited StoryCorps in St. Petersburg, Fla., where they discussed losing their right legs.
StoryCorps

Back in 2008, "Boston" Bill Hansbury was learning to live with a prosthetic after losing his leg to an infection. That's when he met Jake Bainter, who was about to have his right leg amputated. The two struck up a friendship, despite a wide gap in their ages — Hansbury was 70, and Bainter was 7.

The pair recently discussed their friendship, and other topics, during a visit to StoryCorps in St. Petersburg, Fla.

"Boston Bill, tell me about the day that we met," says Jake, now 12.

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8:41am

Thu July 19, 2012
Around the Nation

U.S. Men Held At Border With Canadian Contraband

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Two young Seattle men came back from a trip to Canada bearing gifts - six chocolate eggs known as Kinder Surprise eggs, because each has a plastic toy inside. They got their own surprise when they reached the U.S. border and agents informed them each egg carried a $2,500 fine. The men told KOMO News they were eventually allowed across without a fine and without the eggs, which are banned in the U.S. as a choking hazard. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

8:30am

Thu July 19, 2012
Around the Nation

Hasselhoff Photos Stolen From Store's Ad Campaign

Cumberland Farms put giant photo cutouts of David Hasselhoff in front of their stores across New England and Florida. The 60-year-old star of Baywatch and Knight Rider is shown smiling, wearing a tank top and promoting iced coffee. Of 570 photos, roughly 550 have been stolen.

8:01am

Thu July 19, 2012
Europe

Israel Suspects Extremists In Bulgaria Attack

Originally published on Sun July 22, 2012 9:43 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Let's learn more, now, about an attack in Bulgaria. Seven people were killed, we're told, among them, five Israelis, in a suspected suicide bombing. It happened at a seaside resort town called Burgos. More than 30 more people were injured by this explosion. Israel is calling it a terrorist attack and says it suspects Iran or Muslim extremists. NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro joins us on the line, now, from Tel Aviv.

Hi, Lourdes.

LOURDES GARCIA-NAVARRO, BYLINE: Good morning.

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7:52am

Thu July 19, 2012
Around the Nation

Drought Hits Farmers And Residential Landscapers

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 8:01 am

The drought is beginning to really sink its teeth into the Midwest. More than three-quarters of the nation's corn acres are in a drought zone. In Iowa, Illinois and Indiana, corn crops are burning up and its causing commodity prices to shoot up. Suburban residents are paying to water their lawns, but it isn't doing much good.

7:32am

Thu July 19, 2012
The Upstate Economy

Sensor startup senses golden opportunity

Courtesy photo / Sensorcon

Are we on the verge of a “sensor revolution?”

Sensorcon hopes so. The Buffalo-based tech startup envisions a world where the average person is empowered with a small device that reads temperature, carbon monoxide levels, dew point and more.

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7:13am

Thu July 19, 2012
Regional Coverage

Brewery tax credit law signed

Gov. Andrew Cuomo at Matt Brewery in Utica
Ellen Abbott/WRVO

New York state is trying to get out of the way of the burgeoning number of craft breweries in the state. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a law Wednesday that uses a mixture of tax credits and incentives to boost the beer business.

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7:11am

Thu July 19, 2012
Business

Yahoo May Be Marissa Mayer's Biggest Challenge Yet

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 8:00 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

We're going to hear more now about the woman taking the reins of one of Silicon Valley's most famous and challenged companies. Marissa Mayer took the tech world by surprise this week when it was announced she was taking the CEO job at Yahoo. The buzz grew louder when it came out she's pregnant and planning on working during her maternity leave.

Mayer is known for being one of Google's first employees and its first female engineer. NPR's Laura Sydell has this profile of Mayer and what she brings to her new job at Yahoo.

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6:53am

Thu July 19, 2012
Around the Nation

Civil Rights Group, SCLC, Tries To Remain Relevant

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 8:00 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep.

The civil rights organization co-founded by Martin Luther King Junior meets in Sanford, Florida today for its annual convention. The Southern Christian Leadership Conference has struggled in recent years with leadership battles and declining membership. Now members want to rebrand the SCLC. Here's NPR's Kathy Lohr.

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6:36am

Thu July 19, 2012
Africa

U.S. Resident Caught Up In Sudan's Protest Movement

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 12:59 pm

Rudwan Dawod stands in front of a school he helped build in Turalei, South Sudan. The Oregon resident is now detained in Sudan, accused of terrorism after he participated in protests there.
Courtesy of Nancy Williams Dawod

American Nancy Williams and Sudanese Rudwan Dawod met in South Sudan, where they were both working. The two fell in love and married, and they're expecting their first child in September. But while Nancy Williams Dawod is home in Oregon, her husband, who has U.S. residency, is in detention in Sudan, facing terrorism charges and possibly a death sentence.

He is due to appear in court next week.

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5:24am

Thu July 19, 2012
NPR Story

Business News

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 8:00 am

Egypt's former spy chief Omar Suleiman was appointed vice president at the peak of the democracy uprising in January of 2011. The official Middle East News Agency said in a brief report that Suleiman died at a U.S. hospital early Thursday.

4:41am

Thu July 19, 2012
NPR Story

Interest Rate Scandal Follow Up

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 8:01 am

An influential group of bankers comes up with the critical interest rate known as the LIBOR. The world uses it as a benchmark for how much to charge consumers on mortgages and other loans. For more on how the rate is set, Renee Montagne talks to Gillian Tett of the Financial Times.

4:41am

Thu July 19, 2012
NPR Story

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 8:01 am

United Airlines posted a deal last week that got Brian Kelly's attention. He writes a blog about frequent flyer miles called "The Points Guy." The flight he was looking at was to Hong Kong that would require four frequent flyer miles.

4:41am

Thu July 19, 2012
NPR Story

An Update On Syrian Bombing

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 8:01 am

The opposition in Syria delivered a powerful blow to President Bashar Assad's regime Wednesday. A bomb attack killed the country's top security officials. Renee Montagne talks to Liz Sly of The Washington Post about the ongoing clashes.

3:33am

Thu July 19, 2012
Human Tissue Donation

The Seamy Side Of The Human Tissue Business

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 8:01 am

Michael Mastromarino (center) appeared in a New York City courtroom for sentencing on charges of corruption, body stealing and reckless endangerment, as the mastermind behind a scheme to loot hundreds of corpses and sell bone and tissue for transplants.
Jesse Ward AP

Part 4 in a four-part series

The human tissue industry has created medical advances for millions of Americans. Tissue taken from cadavers is turned into medical products for the living. A tendon can be used to repair a torn ACL. Veins are used in heart bypass operations. Bone can be turned into plates and screws. They look like something you'd find in a hardware store, but these get used to mend a broken leg. It's a $1 billion-a-year industry that attracts the altruistic, but sometimes the greedy.

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3:07am

Thu July 19, 2012
Presidential Race

Tax Professionals Scrutinize Mitt Romney's Returns

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 9:58 am

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks at a campaign rally in Bowling Green, Ohio, on Wednesday.
J.D. Pooley Getty Images

President Obama's campaign continues to hammer presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney over the GOP challenger's refusal to release more of his tax returns. Romney has provided one year's record and promised a second year's worth of returns. But even some of his fellow Republicans now say that's not enough.

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3:06am

Thu July 19, 2012
World

The Cost Of Women's Rights In Northwest Pakistan

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 8:31 pm

Earlier this month, 25-year-old Farida Afridi, who ran an organization that provides information for women about their rights, was gunned down in the street, near the city of Peshawar in northwest Pakistan. No one has been arrested for this killing. In all likelihood no one will be.

On July 4, Afridi was leaving her home to go to her office in Peshawar. What happened next shocked the local community, says Zar Ali Khan, who heads a consortium of activist groups in Peshawar.

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3:05am

Thu July 19, 2012
Books

A Network Head Reflects In 'Interview'

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 10:10 am

David Westin was the president of ABC News from 1997 to 2010.
Rene Macura AP

On Nov. 7, 2000, producers and editors at ABC News prepared to make a very public decision.

It was election night, with George W. Bush facing off against Al Gore. And it was, memorably, undecided until the early hours of the following morning, when other TV networks began calling the election for Bush.

David Westin, then the president of ABC News, recalls the agony as his network's elaborate election unit was beaten on the call — they had held back.

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3:03am

Thu July 19, 2012
Dead Stop

A Muslim Cemetery Helps To Ease Funerals' Strain

Originally published on Tue July 24, 2012 2:52 pm

At the Garden of Peace cemetery in Flint, Mich., Muslims are buried in accordance with traditional Islamic burial rites.
Sami Yenigun NPR

The Garden of Peace cemetery opened when the Islamic community in Flint, Mich., needed a place to bury their dead in accordance with their religion. After operating for only a couple of years, the cemetery has already welcomed a diverse group of American Muslims.

Tucked in the left corner of an open field, on a breezy, buggy, warm summer morning in Flint, lie parallel rows of identical headstones. There are roughly 30 of them, all facing the same direction.

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4:21pm

Wed July 18, 2012
Regional Coverage

Dry weather threatens hay, corn crops

The hot, dry weather is taking a toll on crops in the region. Scattered heavy rains have brought some relief to some areas, but overall, production of field crops like hay and corn is suffering. In the North Country, it's been decades since the area experienced a summer so dry.

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9:57am

Wed July 18, 2012
World

Syrian Regime Hit By Deadly Blast In Damascus

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Let's follow up now on what appears to be a serious blow to the regime in Syria today. A blast repeatedly killed the country's defense chief, the brother-in-law of President Bashar al-Assad and wounded other top officials. This explosion, we're told, occurred inside the tightly guarded national security headquarters in Damascus. To sort out what we know, or don't know, about this incident so far, we've called Neil MacFarquar. He's a correspondent for the New York Times. He's in Beirut. Welcome back to the program.

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8:54am

Wed July 18, 2012
Regional Coverage

Miner hosts meeting to discuss upstate cities' financial woes

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner, left.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Some of upstate New York's mayors are putting their brains together to deal with looming fiscal nightmares.

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8:35am

Wed July 18, 2012
Regional Coverage

Business group asks for audit of Thruway Authority

A business group is asking the New York State Thruway Authority to delay a proposed 45 percent increase in truck tolls and conduct an audit of the authority’s finances instead.

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7:56am

Wed July 18, 2012
Around the Nation

Following Up On Tuesday's Feline Mayor Story

Originally published on Wed July 18, 2012 9:57 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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